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May 2018 Upcoming Southern CA CIO Events

May 2018 TENG Upcoming CIO Events in Southern California There's plenty of networking events other than TENG and we strongly encourage you to attend these events. If we've missed one below then let us know. Cisco and Citrix Synergy 2018 May 8-10 2018 http://www.ciscoeventhub.com/citrixsynergy TechCouncil of Southern California,  Executive Breakfast May 10 2018 https://www.siia.net/tcosc/Events/Executive-Breakfast/eID/155 McDermott & Bull, OC Technology Roundtable May 10 2018 http://mbexec.net/events/oc-technology-roundtable-5/ Caltech Entrepreneurs Forum, The Business of Blockchain May 12 2018 https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-business-of-blockchain-tickets-44691278818 CIO Exchange Dinner, CIO members of UCLA IS Associates May 14 2018 https://isassociates.ucla.edu/events/2018-05-14/cio-exchange-dinner Argyle Executive Forum May 16 2018 https://www.argyleforum.com/Events/2018-chief-information-officer-leadership-forum---los-angeles Ignite ’18 USA May 21-24 2018 https://ignite.paloaltonetworks.com/usa/usa_home.html The IT Summit May 23 2018 http://www.theitsummit.com/event/los-angeles-2018/ Technology Executives Networking Group Southern California May 24 2018 CIO leadership Series - Developing Executive Presence https://www.eventbrite.com/e/cio-leadership-series-developing-executive-presence-tickets-45813353975 SCSIM The Digitally Agile Organization May 31 2018 https://scsim.org/2018/04/scsim-spring-forum-may-31-2018/ The Digital Matrix: New Rules for Business Transformation May 31 2018 https://merage.uci.edu/research-faculty/centers/digital-transformation/cio-roundtable.html OCTANe’s Technology Innovation Forum (TIF) 5/31/2018 - 6/1/2018 https://www.tif2018.com/ Southern California CIO Executive Summit June 6 2018 https://10times.com/southerncalifornia-mid-market Advancing Women in Technology (AWT) June 6 2018 https://www.eventbrite.com/e/mindful-communications-in-the-workplace-tickets-45121124498 TECHSPO LA 2018 June 13-14 2918 https://techspola.com/ CIO Synergy June 14 2018 http://www.ciolosangeles.com/ Captive Eight, Exclusive, Invite-Only Business Event for IT Executives July 7 2018 http://captiveeight.com/events/it-executive-event-12/ IT Roadmap, Powering the Agile Enterprise July 19 2018 https://www.eiseverywhere.com/ehome/304810?t=58d729e3193738edd8bd77815ac1ad11 CIO 100 Symposium August 13-15 2018 http://www.cio100.com/ Bruce McCullough Chair, Technology Executives Networking Group Southern California Website: http://socalteng.com/ Email: contactus@socalteng.com LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/brucemccullough

TENG Southern California Launches NEW Job Lead Webpage

If you'would like to submit a job to TENG Southern California, please see our NEW job submission web page. Over 95% of our member are passive candidates. Jobs submitted to TENG must target: CIO, CTO, VP IT, Director IT or IT Management Consultant. Once your submission is approved will post to the TENG Job Board. We do not charge a fee for this service. http://socalteng.com/submit-a-job-lead/

Hiring Psychology and Why We Share

When I am interviewing candidates for recruiting assignments, I always inquire about their previous job search activities, to gain some idea how long they have been looking and how well they have penetrated the market. As people recount their experiences, I will hear vignettes similar to these, “I came in second for the Director’s job at XYZ,” or “I  had a great interview with the company and they sounded like they would be calling with an offer, but I haven’t heard from them in a month”. Probably these words, or some version of them, have been uttered by nearly every job candidate at some time or other. Of course, upon hearing such comment from candidates whom I represent, it is interesting to compare their input to my clients’ feedback. Many times these debriefings have left me wondering if my candidate and my client were in the same room together, but I will save this thought and discuss it in my upcoming series of newsletters on the Interview Campaign. During my career in executive search, I have heard the comment, “second is always last”. Another version of this is that every candidate on the slate for a specific job, who is not hired, comes in second. Of the hundreds of searches I have executed in the past 26 years, I can count on my hands the times when the client’s “anointed” candidate did not accept an offer, or the deal fell through for any number of reasons, that a number two was taken. I have several fingers left over. Typically in any search, one person emerges as the chosen one. When the hire cannot be consummated with this person, the client almost inevitably states, “Show us more candidates”. When pushed to reconsider those already seen, they usually decline, offering what they feel are weaknesses in those individuals who remain in the pool. Valid or not, that’s the way it is. The hiring “dance” or process, especially at the senior executive level, is based more upon the chemistry of the moment, or whatever makes two people “click”. Frequently it is referred to as a marriage, which is a very apt metaphor. I could recount many stories where people were hired, not for being the most qualified candidate, but because they connected with the hiring executive on a personal and professional level. Knowing this, it simply means that one person will stand out from the pack and get the offer, whether they were seen early in the search or late. All you can do as a candidate is prepare for an interview do your best to sell yourself and move on. If you get an offer, you can celebrate. The purpose of The TENG and what makes it work is when its ACTIVE members share job leads on an as-found basis. The Associate members are not interviewing. If you wait for your candidacy to end, chances are the job will be filled or out on offer. You will be doing your friends a disservice by wasting their time on a dead job lead. I created this group to operate much  Like The Financial Executives Network Group, (You’re right, it’s The FENG www.thefeng.org ), [...]

Public vs. Private Companies

Everyone is broadening their search parameters to uncover new opportunities in the present marketplace. Previously unexplored career possibilities are now being actively considered. By and large, most IT executives have built their careers in the publicly held companies. Management style, culture and politics can differ significantly between publicly and privately held businesses. Even the dot.coms, though small, offered a business mind-set that, while entrepreneurial, was perhaps a hybrid of the larger stock company and a family-owned or closely held business. I am not saying that one is better than the other, but it pays to know something about these differences. Because most of us have spent our careers in the larger and mid-tier public companies, I am going to focus on some of the issues that often surround the private ones. These are purely my own observations taken during my years as a search consultant, from dealing with closely held clients and speaking with people who have worked for such enterprises. If you are not part of the family, don’t plan on becoming the CEO or President. There are exceptions to this, but they are few. If you are considering a senior IT position in a private company, and the CIO position is held by a family member who is younger than retirement age, don’t plan on being promoted to that position anytime soon. If you are content being a number two and the company is stable, this may be a very good opportunity, as long as you don’t mind someone else calling the shots. If you are the CIO of a privately held company and the President appoints their son or daughter, who has a BS in Computer Science and an MBA, to be your understudy; update your resume and start looking for a new position. Ultimately, this person will be your replacement. Patience takes on added meaning in a closely held firm. It may have to be your most critical skill. Each of us can tell countless stories of the convoluted decision and approval processes that we have encountered in our careers. As an IT executive, when you go to top management in a private firm to fund your latest initiative, you’re not only competing with every other request from other areas of the company, you have to factor in your boss’ emotional needs. For example, let’s say you are making a presentation to the owner recommending a hardware upgrade, new software or a department expansion to make the business more competitive. While you are waiting to speak to the owner, who is on the phone, you spot a brochure on his desk for a new seventy-foot Hatteras Motor Yacht, or you hear him organizing a syndicate to buy a professional sports franchise. You may have the most compelling financial arguments for your endeavor, but you may lose. I am not saying that executives in these firms are immature, but the difference is that you are asking them to spend money, which they may think belongs in their pocket. They may agree with you that your idea has considerable merit, but if they are happy with the status quo, you will have a difficult time changing [...]

Creating Your Resume

Writing an effective resume is a daunting task under the best of circumstances, mostly because most of us don’t do it for a living and it is not easy for many to cogently explain themselves in such a formal, structured manner. It poses an even greater challenge during our present economic times because we are competing for a few select positions in a tight market. People continually ask me, “What should I do to ensure that my resume will be near the top of the pile, when the company prepares to begin interviews”. All I can do is give you my thoughts, based upon my 26 years as a search consultant. Resumes are like opinions, everyone has one, and each has its positive and negative qualities. There are any number of books and guides on effective resume writing and there are businesses, which, for a fee, will write your resume from scratch. Any of these should be acceptable avenues. What I am going to discuss in this newsletter, are thoughts and impressions that I have gathered over my career. Your resume is a marketing tool. It should honestly and accurately portray your experience in such a way as to make its reader want to interview you. That’s it, plain and simple. Its link to the interview is that it is a business document where you are allowed (and expected) to “blow your horn”, albeit without exaggeration. It should be printed on a good quality white or buff paper. Use standard letter size. Any over sized documents intended to attract attention, are usually discarded because they won’t stack neatly with other resumes or fit in a file. Two dominant formats or structures are typical. One is the reverse chronological format; the other is the functional format. In the reverse chronology, you discuss your entire work history, from your present or most recent position, all the way back to when you first began your professional career. In the functional resume, people typically present their expertise as a series of bulleted points, with a brief job chronology at the end. I have also seen blends of these two styles. Almost unanimously, my clients over the years have expressed a strong preference for the  reverse chronology style. They expect to see a clearly written document that illustrates your entire career, with all the “holes” (if any exist) explained. They also like to know what people have accomplished and when. Many hiring companies view the functional resume as a means of politely hiding your age, gaps in employment, or job-hopping. A major drawback of the functional format is that unless you date each of your accomplishments, your reader can’t map them to a specific job, company or period in time. One page resumes are for trainees only. With the complex issues that contemporary business professionals encounter, anyone with a few years’ experience almost by necessity has at least a two page resume. Two to three pages are an acceptable length. If you are fairly senior, the best way to approach this is to emphasize your most recent ten years’ experience and then condense your prior history. [...]

Ego is spelled M-O-N-E-Y

When I first entered the recruiting business twenty-six years ago, I was fortunate to have a supervisor who was an excellent trainer, coach and mentor. My learning curve was exceptionally steep because my previous work experience was as an Air Force officer and broadcast journalist on radio. He must have had a great deal of faith in me, because as a new recruiter, I not only had to learn the processes of recruiting, but also had to learn the processes of my client companies and my candidates. He groomed me to be the top producer in a firm with 120 employees in about 3 years. I owe him my career. Whenever a client was about to hire one of my candidates, he would always remind me, “Ego is spelled m-o-n-e-y”. He would also say that if a candidate states that money doesn’t matter, that’s when it seems to matter the most. I have witnessed countless times over the years where people have refused job offers because their ego would not permit them to accept something less than what they had in mind no matter how unrealistic. This is a very sensitive topic because we all tend to measure our success by how much we earn. The central issue here is weighing short and long term priorities, before and during the interview process. Understandably, things are more complicated now by the slow market. Many unemployed candidates have admitted to me that they would literally accept any offer for any job and I don’t blame them. Nonetheless, it behooves us to seek answers to some of the following questions before and during the exploration of a new opportunity: What is my relative value in the marketplace? There is no easy answer here. You have to look in several places. You may have some insight into your company’s compensation structure, which more than likely uses a “banding” approach. You can check out the Computer World annual salary survey. If you have taken some interviews, talked with executive search consultants in the past year or just searched on line, you probably have some useful data. You also need to consider industry and geography, which can have major influence on compensation levels for comparable positions. How much money do I need annually to meet my living expenses? Do you spend every penny you make, or are you an active saver? Ideally, the second choice is the preferred one, but I also understand that if you are middle-aged, with a home mortgage and two or three kids attending college, saving outside of a company 401K, may not be possible. How will this new opportunity benefit my career? What experience will I gain that will give me better career traction in the future? Is this simply a paycheck until something better comes along? If so, how will I explain that on future interviews? If this job is paying significantly more than I am earning, am I being hired to fix an urgent, critical problem only to face a layoff after [...]

Following the Boss

Following the Boss In our present job market an invitation to interview is treated like gold. Based upon my conversations with some of you, any job offer at this point in time would be welcome, and understandably so. Despite our present anxieties, each of us, when evaluating potential career opportunities, will do whatever comes to mind to assess their downside risk potential. The more obvious areas of consideration include financial strength of the company, management stability, potential for successful performance, product/service viability/value proposition, personal chemistry, etc. to name a few. Many job seekers feel that following a former superior or peers, for that matter, is a very effective way of reducing risk potential in their next career move. Countless stories of career success can be linked directly to opportunities that were extended to us by those we know and trust. However, there are also a large segment of people whose careers have suffered, because they failed to consider the downside risks of such a move. I have talked with many scarred veterans over my years as a search consultant, who have given me an earful of anecdotal proof. When following the boss fails, especially more than once in your career, the effect may be devastating and could injure your future candidacy for the most desirable positions. Moreover, the effects can have broader, more personal impact if you have relocated your family and left a more stable company to accept such an opportunity. The chemistry that forms among the members of a successful business team is much the same as that of any sports team. It is based upon trust, spirit, camaraderie, familiarity, respect and cooperation. This chemistry may change dramatically when key members are changed, which is the focus of this newsletter. When considering an offer from a former superior, it is prudent to review your past working relationship with them. Which of their qualities did you admire the most and the least? How did you deal with the latter qualities? How did they rate you in your reviews? How well did they buffer you from the politics that went on at their level and above? Assuming that you enjoyed a successful working relationship with them, which would probably lead them to hire you again, what was the nature of your work? Looking ahead, you then need to answer these questions: What is the political climate in this new company? What is the tenure of your former superior? Is s/he performing a role that is business critical? Are you able to assess their success in this company? Is s/he under heavy deliverable / deadline pressure? What is the job you are being asked to do? Can you do it? Where does your career go, if s/he leaves within the first year of your employment? Does this new company pose a greater business risk than your present employer does? Over my past twenty-six years in executive search, I have seen candidates who have allowed their previous boss, only to suffer circumstances such as these: Their manager is under unknown political pressures, which influences their relationship, causing abrupt departure of the subordinate. Related to the [...]

Did you stay too long in your previous position?

Did you stay too long in your previous position? Ask anybody in the recruiting business and you’ll probably hear that people who have a long tenure with a company are unattractive employment candidates as are the job hoppers. All of this is very subjective, of course. What is too long? Certainly someone who has had the same job in the same company with little change, for the past twenty years would fit the profile. On the other hand, over the past few years when I have done CIO and other senior level searches, I have seen many candidate resumes showing fewer than six months at the present job but with enough bulleted accomplishments to cover several years. I sometimes have difficulty taking those candidates very seriously. In either case, we can’t always control the circumstances that influence and cause job changes, but are frequently called upon to play the hand that is dealt us. Many times our career decisions are driven by our personal needs, although such issues have to be discussed carefully in an interview. I can think of countless cases where people have stayed at unfulfilling jobs for many years to avoid breaking continuity in health benefits needed to protect a family member. Many separated and divorced parents work positions only because they are more geographically available to their children. This can be very complicated with the many “blended” families we see today. Indeed, this social condition has become so rampant, that my own teenage daughter feels like the odd person in her circle of friends because her parents are married; live together and actually like each other. Where I am heading with this is to a theme you will hear me touch on in many newsletters to come. To wit: the career search/interview process is a very unique business situation, arguably unlike any other. It is the one situation where you the candidate, are expected to “blow your horn” and sell yourself, albeit carefully, while scrutinizing the company. On a job interview, you are no longer a CIO, VP, Director, etc, but you are a sales professional, who must effectively market your services, while simultaneously performing due diligence on the company. It helps immensely to have a solid grasp of who you are and where you prefer to realize your career. Getting into my initial comments about tenure, how do you deal with this? Very few of us have that perfect resume: at least three years or more with every company, but not more than five, multiple promotions, no breaks in employment disguised as consulting ventures, salary history always heading “north”, etc. Before you send out another resume, much less take another interview; it may be helpful to conduct a mental inventory of your entire job history. You can’t change what has happened, but this is an ideal time to improve your future. Begin by spending time looking back over all the jobs you’ve had. How happy and fulfilled were you in each one. What were the [...]